Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!



Limewire Being Sued For 75 Trillion

magus_melchior Re:This is really good news (545 comments)

To play devil's advocate, losing this case may give them enough leverage in Congress to pass unnecessary legislation-- and with 2 RIAA lawyers in the upper echelons of Justice, I doubt the White House realizes the danger that poses.

more than 3 years ago

Limewire Being Sued For 75 Trillion

magus_melchior Re:I'll go ahead and cover this one. (545 comments)

It's probably all the Star Wars clips I've been watching on Youtube, but that reminded me of this James Earl Jones movie quote:

I know you have been inconvenienced, and I'm prepared to compensate you. Shall we say, one million-- a-HA!!

more than 3 years ago

Limewire Being Sued For 75 Trillion

magus_melchior Re:Some perspective (545 comments)

That should tell us this case is little more than intimidation. If I were Limewire, I'd retort that this is extortion on a literally astronomical scale; alas, I don't think they have the money to sustain too much resistance.

more than 3 years ago

Limewire Being Sued For 75 Trillion

magus_melchior Re:Some perspective (545 comments)

So basically, (loss + statutory loss) * (legal fees) * (pain and suffering over not being able to afford the latest yacht).

more than 3 years ago

Apple Removes Gay Cure App From App Store

magus_melchior Re:Gay Cure was NOT the name of the app (917 comments)

IMO this is a fundamental weakness of the iOS platform-- you can develop apps for the iPhone for your congregation, but it might not get past Apple and the public at large. That's the price of using iOS.

Furthermore, if people get riled up about the organization, (a) that's to be expected, as Jesus himself said the world at large won't be committed to Christianity, (b) people will generally believe what they want to believe, often in the face of evidence to the contrary (see: Rick Santelli), and (c) there's the possibility that Exodus International simply didn't communicate its message effectively enough-- I didn't know much about EI, and I'm a Christian.

more than 3 years ago

Apple Removes Gay Cure App From App Store

magus_melchior Re:mixed feelings and abstract hate. (917 comments)

Okay, a parallel drawn between a fortune denied through online sales of applications and the Holocaust gets +4 Insightful?

Unless Apple is threatening the Internet access of a continent, I don't think their policies will do much more than demonstrate that they're inconsistent and ill-tempered.

more than 3 years ago

Cutting Prices Is the Only Way To Stop Piracy

magus_melchior Re:It's only half the problem... (620 comments)

The ones who don't want to pay even then? You really weren't going to make any money off of them anyway.

Maybe fifty to sixty years ago, Hollywood (and the RIAA for that matter) would have written off such people as losses because there just wasn't enough of them to threaten the bottom line. Then someone got the (tongue-in-cheek) brilliant idea of treating all such piracy estimates as actual losses. It was fun for a while-- the studios and publishers could then claim massive losses to avoid paying the artists and the government alike.

But since their entire business model hinges on not just this absolutely inane fiscal calculation, but also on the complete domination of the production process, the first thing they do when they start to see declining profits is to blame the Internet.

Bang, now there are corporate lawyers looking to make big bucks off of indignant and foolish executives, children, and anyone who happens to get caught in the media cartel's legal dragnet.

more than 3 years ago

Open Source Guy Takes the Hardest Job At Microsoft

magus_melchior Re:Sounds Familiar... (325 comments)

That's doubtful-- I'm sure he's under NDA. The best he could probably do is provide hints, and even that could get him in trouble.

more than 2 years ago

New MacBook Pro Teardown Reveals 'Shoddy Assembly'

magus_melchior Re:So much for build quality... (531 comments)

Well, the iFixit guy didn't see any other major problems (other than difficulty of replacing the LCD, but that's more of a design issue than anything), and all of the problems he cited can be solved by tightening the build process.

It's also possible that he got a unit built by a n00b. Stripped screws, forgotten ZIF locking, and too much paste are novice errors. The problem with manufacturing in China isn't that the build is consistently crappy, but that the build quality is not consistent.

more than 2 years ago

Police Raid PS3 Hacker's House, Hacker Releases PS3 'Hypervisor Bible'

magus_melchior Re:The moral/practical lesson of this story is (448 comments)

I don't know what it is about the mindset of corporate Japan, but despite the quality of their goods, their attitudes toward invention and copyright often infuriate me. For example, they generally shun using OSS tools which could save them money and help them avoid vendor lock-in, but instead they'll re-invent the wheel at home, since they "can't trust stuff made by foreigners". Seriously?? Industry standard be damned, they would rather duplicate a bunch of work they don't have to, so they could sell it to gullible like-minded execs in Japan and--

Wait. A bunch of things clicked into place.

more than 3 years ago

Comment Profanity by Language

magus_melchior Re:Also a bar chart! (263 comments)

Or because the blog writer had to respond to a troll...

more than 3 years ago

Huge Amounts of Oil Found On Gulf of Mexico Floor

magus_melchior Re:It's ridiculous. (426 comments)

I don't know about you, but modern transportation, the green revolution (cheap and abundant food) and antibiotics, to name just a few of the advances enabled by hydrocarbons, are nothing to be sneezed at.

Yeah, and if petroleum is exhausted to the point of becoming unaffordable, all of those advances will be lost unless we transition to something that doesn't rely on fossil fuels. At the very least, modern transportation as we know it (especially overseas shipping and aircraft-- there's a reason why the Pentagon is taking this seriously) will grind to a halt, and much of the cheap and abundant food we enjoy today will either become impossible to cultivate locally (no artificial fertilizer), or impossible to ship from Peru/Chile.

What's desperately needed are transition fuels for ships and aircraft, to serve as stopgaps before and when the oil crunch hits. Biodiesel works for highway-based freight in temperate climates, so we need the equivalents for heavy fuel oil and kerosene-- and we shouldn't have to sacrifice food/feedstock for it, since several algal species can generate oil on a large scale. We just haven't gotten to the point where we have a strong aquaculture.

Solar and wind energy cannot yet replace our energy needs, not even close. Even if we squeeze every last efficiency gain that we can reasonably get, it still won't be enough.

Solar energy, as current silicon photovoltaics (10-15% efficiency on a good day), can't replace fossil fuel, but they can supplement or offset some of it-- and the offset will only grow when you factor in newer tech like thin-film (20-30%), as well as economies of scale driving down the investment price.

For that matter, there's solar thermal using molten salt, which could power millions of homes and not go offline when the sun goes down. Spain's invested heavily in this, and now their solar facilities are producing practically free energy. Shame it's not offsetting their financial troubles, though. There's also waste to energy conversion and many other technologies that can chip away at the use of fossil fuels-- it's not all about solar and wind.

The point was never that one or two renewable energy techs would completely and immediately replace oil; the point is that a comprehensive strategy involving solar, wind, nuclear, geothermal, tidal, hydro, biofuel, and whatever else we can come up with would reduce our consumption of coal and oil to something more manageable. Then we can seriously think about cutting-edge technologies (like fusion) that could take us off fossil fuel, or change the process to one that's carbon-neutral.

Of course, all of this costs money up-front, and the fossil-fuel-enriched legislators are far more willing to save subsidies on coal and oil, than they are willing to ensure a more stable economy. For that matter, the average investor still thinks "energy = oil|coal"...

more than 3 years ago

Are Google's Best Days In the Past?

magus_melchior Re:Marketshare (322 comments)

That's about the same level of detail and attention span as the typical day trader, who chases after the latest get-rich-quick scheme that flashes something shiny or sexy.

Nuance and sense are not part of that thought process, unfortunately.

more than 3 years ago

The Legend of Zelda Turns 25

magus_melchior The guy could've done some more research... (98 comments)

Unfortunately for Western players, Pols Voice are much more challenging to defeat without that special ability.

They're one-hit kills with a bow and arrows. Not only that, the arrow pierces through, which allows multiple kills with a single arrow-- no other monster in the game is killed this easily by that weapon. Probably not as bone-headedly easy as yelling into a microphone, but a lot easier than the author lets on.

more than 3 years ago

The Legend of Zelda Turns 25

magus_melchior Re:Zelda on philips CD-i (98 comments)

It's like E.T. and Pac-Man for the Atari 2600-- the Games That Shall Not Be Named.

Or was that The Games That Nailed The Coffin Shut For the 2600...?

more than 3 years ago

Can Android Without Dalvik Avoid Oracle's Wrath?

magus_melchior Re:Consistent Enforcement (264 comments)

It could be a test-case, so that if Oracle can take down Google here, they can then use this case as a precedent to file C&D letters.

Plus they're looking at damages and legal fees if they win, and they can potentially demand a cut of every Android-related sale.

more than 3 years ago

Google Announces One Pass Payment System

magus_melchior Re:Google Checkout? (135 comments)

Hey, it beats having the retailer (*cough*Amazon*cough*) decide for me whether or not I can buy something from a foreign vendor with a card issued in the US.

more than 3 years ago

Compared and Contrasted: OpenOffice V. LibreOffice

magus_melchior Re:All about features, not stability (294 comments)

Did LibreOffice get rid of the Oracle Java parts, replace them with something, or what?

The article says that LO does support Java, but you need to download it separately (licensing issues?). Certain features (database for one) require Java, but for basic Word/Excel clone stuff, you probably don't need it.

more than 3 years ago

Glen Beck Warns Viewers Not To Use Google

magus_melchior Re:I think Beck has started to believe his own con (1276 comments)

You're on the right track-- the closest classification is probably narcissistic or something similar.

Before he was on television, he was a radio shock jock (for I believe a college radio station)-- and he wasn't much different than his persona on Fox. One of his pastimes was character assassination of a fellow radio host, making public insults of her appearance and such. He continued doing so even though coworkers have pleaded with him to stop, because his ratings were so high.

more than 3 years ago

Intel Committed To MeeGo Despite Nokia Defection

magus_melchior Re:Intel CPUs not in the mobile space because... (228 comments)

Sure Intel and AMD's offerings will always be "fastest", but do you really need a Six or Eight Core 4ghz CPU costing $1000 to do a few emails, when a $7 750mhz Dual-Core MIPS will do the exact same job?

I can see i7s topping out at around a thousand, but Phenom II hex-cores shouldn't run much more than a few hundred bucks (still, a couple orders of magnitude more costly than the MIPS). Maybe you could get an AMD CPU for a grand if you're going with server chips.

Microsoft cut off the DEC Alpha, PowerPC and MIPS platforms, over 15 years ago in order for Windows NT to compete internally with Windows 95; now they're paying the price and they're going to take down with them anyone else who clings to their coat-tails.

Doubtless they saw the writing on the wall a couple of years earlier than you have, because they wouldn't announce an architecture shift (ARM) unless they were committed to it. This means they'll basically be standing still (sustained by enterprise users and desktop gamers) while Android and iOS eat their lunch in the tablet space.

Of course, Nokia could come out with a badass WP7 tablet and make it a 3-player market. Unfortunately, from what I'm seeing/hearing from Nokia, they're nowhere near ready to go to market.

more than 3 years ago


magus_melchior hasn't submitted any stories.



Post-archival comment on MS Bob

magus_melchior magus_melchior writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Apologies in advance to Lewis Black fans and the two guys whose comments I, uh, "appropriated".

msshill: "So Bill, this world wide web thing is really starting to take off in the academic world. I think it's time we started making our own browser and include it with all installs of Windows."

billg: "That's the dumbest fucking idea I've heard since I've been at Microsoft. By contrast, over here is the best idea I've seen in a long time; its a new user-interface paradigm. I call it 'Bob'"

I don't know much, but I know this. Bob is not a piece of computer software. Bob is an insurance salesman from Topeka, Kansas. You get stuck in an airport terminal with Bob because your airline's been running Windows Me. Bob starts talking to you, and he shows you pictures of his kids, and Bob buys you a drink. You think, "Hey, Bob's not a bad guy." Then he tries to sell you insurance, and you say to yourself, "F*** you, Bob."

That is Bob.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?
or Connect with...

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>